Pesto Pasta with Shrimp and Peas

Prep Time

10 minutes

Cooking Time

20 minutes


about 4 servings


6 - 8 cups water

Whole wheat or whole grain brown rice pasta (if using spaghetti, 4 servings requires a bundle about 2 2/3" in diameter; if using corkscrew, bow tie, penne or rotini, measure 3 cups)

Large pinch of sea salt

2 Tbsp butter, ghee or olive oil

1 lb. raw shrimp, peeled (fresh or frozen)

1 cup shelled peas (fresh or frozen)

3 Tbsp pesto, or to taste

8-10 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half (optional)


  1. If using frozen shrimp, place in a colander and continuously run cold water over it to thaw, about 4-5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, place enough water in a large pot to cover dry pasta twice and bring to a boil. Add pasta and sea salt. Cover, lower heat and cook until al dente, stirring occasionally. (Different pastas require different cooking times, check your label. Some brown rice pastas may take up to 20 minutes, some whole wheat spaghetti may only need 9-10 minutes.) Drain and return pasta to the pot.
  3. While pasta is cooking, heat butter, ghee or oil over medium heat and add shrimp. Cook until pink on both sides and shrimp have curled into a "C" shape.
  4. In a separate pot, bring 1 cup of water to a boil. Add peas and cook until tender, about 4 minutes. Drain.
  5. Add cooked shrimp and peas to drained pasta. Add pesto and toss to coat.
  6. Divide pasta among 4 plates or bowls. Add halved tomatoes and garnish with fresh basil, if desired. Serve hot.

Variation: If you don't have (or don't like) pesto - or you're dealing with picky kids who don't want "that green stuff" on their pasta - opt instead for tossing with butter or olive oil and add some salt. You can also add smoked paprika and ground coriander to the shrimp while cooking - yum!